Caribbean Travel World Logo

Caribbean Rum

Sugar Cane Field
Sugar Cane Field

Sugar Factory
Sugar Factory

Appelton Rum
Appelton Rum

El Dorado Rum
Eldorado Rum
Personal Statement
On my 30ths birthday my neighbours gave me a bottle of old caribbean rum. Of course I knew rum before, ordinary rum for grog or cooking and white rum for cocktails, but not fine old rum aged in oak barrels. I was surprised how good this old rum tasted. Since that day I love rum. I visited many rum shops in Barbados and other Caribbean countries and enjoyed a drink at the bar. My favoured brands are Mount Gay Extra Old and Demararas El Dorado Rum. I had the pleasure to visit several rum factories around the world, including Mont Gay in Barbados, Bacardi in Puerto Rico and Budaberg Rum in Australia. Only the Fabrica de Ron in Santiago de Cuba did not let me in. I am sure there are many good rums that I still don't know. I think, old Rum is similar to Brandy but has much more character.


The History of Rum
The origin of the word rum is generally unclear, but probably comes from the word Rumbullion. The birthplace of Rumbullion is considered to Barbados, around 350 years ago. Rumbullion is a Devonshire word meaning "a great tumult", and may have been adopted from some of the Devonshire settlers in Barbados. Plantation slaves realized that molasses, left over from sugar refinement, could be turned into alcohol. The first rum was a terrible tasting liquor. The Caribbean is the epicenter of world Rum production. Virtually every major island group produces its own distinct Rum style. Also several Central American and South American countries, Australia, Fiji, Mexico, the Philippines, India, Reunion Island, and Mauritius are rum producers. 

How Rum is Made
Most companies produce rum from molasses, a few use pure sugarcane juice. Molasses is a by-product of the processing of sugar cane into sugar. The word molasses comes from the Portuguese word melaço, which ultimately comes from mel, the Latin word for "honey". Molasses retains up to 5 % sugar. There are four major processes involved in making rum;  fermentation, distillation, aging and blending. The molasses is mixed with a special yeast and then placed into vats for the fermentation stage. The yeast initiates the process of transforming the sugars into alcohol. The result is cane wine with 7 % of alcohol that will be sent for distillation. Distilling separates the alcohol from the fermented mixture and concentrates it to make the actual rum. This rum is aged in oak barrels and ultimately blended to produce the spirit we know as rum. Today, almost all rum is aged in used oak barrels that once held whiskey or bourbon. 

Premium Rum
There are different sorts of rum, light rums, spiced rums, flavored rums, overproof rums, white rums, dark rums, and others. Here we only want to talk about the carefully produced and aged premium rums. They have more character and flavor than their "mixing" counterparts, and are generally consumed straight. Don't drink them on ice and please, never spoil them with coke!

Remarkable Rum Producers

Appleton Estate, Jamaica
Appleton Estate is the oldest and most famous of all of Jamaica's rum producers. It is nestled in the fertile Nassau Valley on either side of the Black River in the Southwest of Jamaica. The origins of Appleton Estate date back to 1655 when the English captured Jamaica from the Spaniards.

Demerara Distillers, Guyana
The existence of Demerara Distillers can be traced back to the year 1670 when about 300 small rum producesrs in Guyana formed a co-operative. With changes and consolidation over time these were gradually merged into one distillery operation in Diamond, outside Georgetown. In 1992  they launchedtheir El Dorado range of rums, which won many awards.

Mount Gay, Barabados
Mount Gay Rum is produced by Mount Gay Distilleries Ltd. of Barbados. The oldest surviving deed for the company is from 1703, making Mount Gay Rum one of, if not "The Oldest," rum companies in the world

Barbancourt, Haiti
Dupré Barbancourt, a Frenchman from the cognac-producing region of Charente emigrated to Haiti, and founded his company in the 1860s, producing rum directly from sugar cane juice. The Barbancourt family grows the sugar cane for their rum in their own fields. The rum is double distilled, using a process similar to that used to produce cognac.

Cruzan Rum, Saint Croix, U.S.V.I.
Their Cruzan distillery was founded in 1760 and has gone through several owners in the last century. Since there is no longer a sugar mill on St. Croix, there is no local supply of molasses. The raw material arrives by ship from South and Central America.

Further remarkable rums are Admiral Rodney Rum from Saint Lucia, J.M Rhum from Martinique, and others. 

List of Caribbean Rum Producers

Antigua and Barbuda
  • Cavalier
  • English Harbour
  • The West Indies Rum Distillery Ltd. (Goddard's Enterprises)
  • The Mount Gay Rum Distillery (owned by Remy Cointreau)

British Virgin Islands
  • Pusser's Ltd.

  • Cubay
  • Havana Club
  • Ron Legendario
  • Ron Mulata
  • Ron Edmundo Dantes
  • Ron Santiago de Cuba
  • Ron Varadero

Dominican Republic
  • Barceló
  • Bermúdez
  • Brugal
  • Matusalem
  • Siboney
  • Damoiseau (rum)
  • Montebello (rum)
  • Père Labat (rum)
  • Séverin (rum)

  • Rhum Barbancourt

  • Appleton (rum)
  • Appleton Estate
  • Myers's
  • Rum-bar rum
  • The Rum Company
  • J. Wray and Nephew 

Source: Wikipedia 
  • Rhum Clément
  • Rhum Dillon
  • Habitation Saint-Etienne
  • J. Bally
  • La Mauny
  • Saint James (rum)
  • Trois Rivières (rum)
  • Neisson (rum)

Puerto Rico
  • Bacardi
  • Don Q
  • Ron del Barrilito

Saint Kitts and Nevis
  • Cane Spirit Rothschild (no longer produced)
  • Belmont Estate Rum

Saint Lucia
  • Chairman's Reserve Rum
  • Rum 1931
  • Rum Admiral Rodney
  • TOZ rum

Trinidad and Tobago
  • Angostura Rums (Angostura 1824, Angostura 1919, Old Oak, Royal Oak)
  • Fernandes Rums (Fernandes Black Label, Forres Park, Vat 19)
  • 10 Cane (Moet Hennessy)

US Virgin Islands
  • Virgin Islands Rum Industries, Inc (Cruzan)
  • William Grant & Sons (Sailor Jerry)
  • Diageo (Captain Morgan)

Birdwatching field guideTortuga Original Caribbean Rum Cake,
  • Moist and luscious, authentic rum cake
  • Baked in the Caribbean from old family recipe
  • Hand glazed with 5 year old Tortuga rum then vacuum packed to lock in freshness
  • 16 oz cake


Sugar Factory
Sugar Factory

Rum Barrels
Rum Barrels

Barbancourt Rum
Barbancourt Rum

Mount Gay Rum
Mount Gay Rum